Potential New GSD Owner
I am considering buying a GSD puppy but still have some doubts so I am writing this post.
My family owned two GSD when I was a kid, they were great family pets and I remember them fondly. I do remember them being a bit of a handful regarding strangers coming to the house as well as dealing with small animals like cats. At the time I lived in an isolated area with few people around so the dogs weren't socialized the way dogs in more urban areas are.
While I don't remember my dogs being this monumental challenge to own, I was a kid so I'm sure my memory isn't complete. The dogs were never agressive with any of us kids and were awesome companions and protectors for us.
Reading the "should I buy a GSD" posts and stuff makes it seem like these dogs are and incredible challenge to own (besides the hefty exercise requirements) and is making me second guess my own memories of my dogs. Is their behavior that sketchy towards other people and animals or does it depend on the dog?
My main concern would be that the dogs not be aggressive with anyone in the family, that they be able to get along with my 6 year old daughter, my existing mutt and a cat but that it still guard the house against any unwanted guests. This combination of traits may not be possible for any dog and if so I will pass on a GSD for now and wait until my situation changes.
Finally, the last thing is regarding breeders. I have found about 5 breeders that would meet the "reputable breeder" guidelines posted on this forum. I have emailed or FB messaged all of them. I have gotten only two responses. You would think that if you were trying to find people with $1,500-$2,500 to spend on a dog you would be eager to get back in touch and answer their questions. Maybe I need to call but the web sites said email was best....??? Would you rule out a breeder who didn't respond?
Also, what's the deal with the rescue shepherds, most of them seem pretty questionable behavior-wise and health-wise....can a quality dog be found at a rescue? I wouldn't want one that was too old.
In any event, I look forward to any feedback you might have before I do or do not join your ranks.